The Lanka Academic

AUGUST 13, 2000 EST, USA
VOL. 1, NO. 130

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The Constitution of the Republic of Sri Lanka
(The proposed new constitution)
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Malaysian News. LABUNORUWA, Sri Lanka, Aug 1 (Bernama) - The dusty track in this village is like another village path in Sri Lanka's harsh dry zone except that the nameboard has some unique features unlike normal nameboards and bears some unusual names. "Our young are just dying away in the war," laments rice farmer Heen Appuhamy, who himself lost a son in the war. If losing their sons or husbands is enough grief to the village, it is worst when government compensation schemes don't reach them. More...
US State Department. Colombo, 4 August 2000 - The U.S. State Department announced on July 31 that the mail-in period for the next U.S. Diversity Immigrant Visa Lottery Program (DV-2002) will run from noon, October 2, through noon, November 1, 2000. There is no application fee and no special application form is required. The application with the necessary information can simply be typed on a blank sheet of paper. More...
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Sri Lanka opposition linked to killing-fields murders, Sunday Aug 13, 04:25:12. COLOMBO, Aug 13 (AFP) - Sri Lanka's government Sunday stepped up a campaign against opposition leader Ranil Wickremesinghe, linking him to extra-judicial killings 12 years ago, a move which could lead to his arrest, officials said. There was no immediate comment from the police, but official sources said preparations were being made for his arrest ahead of November's parliamentary elections. More...
Published: Sun Aug 13 04:22:39 EDT 2000
Related News Stories
Lanka media says govt linking opposition leader to death squads  - Yahoo
Sri Lankan politician linked to killings  - BBC South Asia
Wickramasinghe was present in torture cell: official  - Hindu

No Connection Fee! Calls to Sri Lanka, only 39c/m!
O  T  H  E  R      H  E  A  D  L  I  N  E  S
Mixed response to Chandrika’s constituent assembly proposal
The Hindustan Times, August 13. SRI LANKAN President Chandrika Kumaratunga's proposal to turn the forthcoming Parliament into a Constituent Assembly (CA) and get her Constitution Bill passed with a simple majority has received a mixed reaction from political parties and pundits, ranging from praise to predictions of doom. "Let the people decide as elections are coming," commented Karu Jayasuriya, chairman of the opposition United National Party (UNP). Welcoming the move, D. Siddharthan, leader of the Peoples' Liberation Organisation of Tamil Eelam (PLOTE) said: "The President knows that neither she nor anybody else can get two-thirds majority under the present constitution because of the existence of the proportional representation system. More...
Published: Sun Aug 13 16:13:08 EDT 2000
Related News Stories
Chandrika pledges to enact new Constitution  -
Sri Lanka leader vows statute reforms in two months  -

New Lanka PM to mediate between monks, govt
Times of India, August 14. In an attempt to win over the support of influntial Buddhist monks for the controversial reforms Bill before this year's general elections, Sri Lankan Prime Minister Ratnasiri Wickrmamanayake has said that he would try mediating between the government and the clergy. Wickramanayake, one of Chandrika's staunch loyalists, who also enjoys a close rapport with top prelates of the Buddhist sects in the country, said on Saturday in Kandy that the Constitution Bill, aimed at ending the bloody ethnic war in the island, would be passed after close consultations with the heads of the Buddhist religious institutions. "We will seek the views of the Mahanayaka Theras on each and every paragraph, clause and lines of the draft constitution so that they could correct us, where we have gone wrong," he told reporters after meeting the heads of the Malwatte and Asgiriya chapters, who had issued a stern warning to the MPs not to vote for the new constitution earlier this week. More...
Published: Sun Aug 13 19:34:29 EDT 2000
Related News Stories
New Sri Lankan PM woos Buddhist clergy  - Hindu
New Sri Lanka premier woos angry Buddhist clergy  - MSNBC-Reuters

Son says former Sri Lanka premier forced to resign
MSNBC, august 13. The infighting in Sri Lanka's first political family resurfaced in public on Sunday when the son of former prime minister Sirimavo Bandaranaike accused his sister of forcing their mother to step down. Anura Bandaranaike, a lawmker of the main opposition United National Party, told The Sunday Times that his mother was not keen to step down, but elder sister President Chandrika Kumaratunga had removed her from the post. Anura Bandaranaike said the grand old lady of Sri Lankan politics was sent a prepared resignation letter and asked to sign it. More...
Published: Sun Aug 13 01:28:38 EDT 2000
Related News Stories
So long, say Lankan icons  -
Curtains for Sri Lanka's mother-and-daughter political union  -
Chandrika forced Bandaranaike to resign : Anura Bandaranaike  - Yahoo

Sri Lanka war budget bites hard, august 13. Four months after Sri Lanka poured unprecedented amounts of money into stalling an equally unparalleled Tamil rebel offensive, the fighting has eased but the national budget is in tatters. Parliament rushed through a string of supplementary estimates last week, voting an additional 28 billion rupees (356 million dollars) for the military to pay for urgent requirements. More...
Published: Sat Aug 12 23:18:35 EDT 2000

Sri Lanka monk vows to help recruit 20,000 soldiers, Sunday Aug 13, 04:23:14. COLOMBO, Aug 13 (AFP) - A senior Sri Lankan Buddhist monk has accepted a challenge from the country's president to help enlist 20,000 men as a boost to the war against Tamil rebels, a press report said Sunday. President Chandrika Kumaratunga had challenged Sinhalese extremists to send 20,000 men to join the army, which is finding it difficult to attract recruits amid a high desertion rate. More...
Published: Sun Aug 13 04:21:00 EDT 2000
Related News Stories
Buddhist monks to help recruit soldiers in Sri Lanka  - AsiaGateway

Colombo taxi drivers rebel over uniforms
BBC, Sunday Aug 13, 04:33:12. Trishaw drivers in the Sri Lankan capital, Colombo, are planning a series of protests over the next week against proposals to make them wear a uniform and carry an identity card. The Sri Lankan authorities say it is important the new regulations are introduced as part of their effort to improve Colombo's image and to tackle crime. More...
Published: Sun Aug 13 04:31:02 EDT 2000

Tamil parties to fiercely contest North-East: Parties look ahead to polls
AsiaGateway, Sunday Aug 13, 12:32:14. Political parties are already preparing for the forthcoming general elections which are likely to see an intense battle for seats by what may be the largest number of ethnic minority parties to enter the parliamentary hustings. All Tamil parties are reportedly preparing to contest every electoral district in the North-Eastern Province and many districts in the rest of the country as well, while the Sri Lanka Muslim Congress is also planning to contest in a majority of districts islandwide, political sources told the 'Sunday Observer'. More...
Published: Sun Aug 13 12:29:35 EDT 2000

India sells patrol vessel to Lanka
The Hindustan Times, August 13. INDIA HAS sold an offshore patrol vessel (OPV) worth $ 20 million to the Sri Lankan Navy to give the latter blue water capability and an ability of operate helicopters on the high seas, according to The Sunday Times. The OPV, INS Shardae, will help the Sri Lankan Navy intercept and engage LTTE arms vessels in the high seas north east of Sri Lanka. "The Sri Lankan navy is ready to accept the OPV," the paper's defence correspondent Iqbal Athas reports. More...
Published: Sun Aug 13 16:11:07 EDT 2000
Related News Stories
RAW financing terrorist outfits of LTTE, Hizbul Mujahideen from its secret funds  - JAL News

Sri Lankan President offers to resign
NDTV/MSNBC, August 12. The Sri Lankan President has offered to resign. Ms. Chandrika Kumaratunga has made this offer on the condition that Sinhalese nationalists who oppose constitutional reforms, are able to provide a workable alternative to resolve the 17-year Tamil separatist war. Ms. Kumaratunga was speaking during an interview broadcast over state television. It was the first nationally televised speech made by the President, since her government was forced to postpone a parliamentary debate on Tuesday, after coming up 12 votes short of the two-thirds majority needed to pass the constitutional reforms. Ms. Kumaratunga called the defeat a "temporary setback" and said her government would "fight back." More...
Published: Sat Aug 12 00:45:43 EDT 2000

Colombo taxi drivers rebel over uniforms
BBC South Asia, august 12. Trishaw drivers in the Sri Lankan capital, Colombo, are planning a series of protests over the next week against proposals to make them wear a uniform and carry an identity card. The drivers of the distinctive three-wheeled taxis complain that the uniform will be uncomfortable to wear in hot weather. They particularly dislike the yellow colour of the proposed jackets and the fact that they will carry advertisements. More...
Published: Sat Aug 12 23:00:33 EDT 2000

Chandrika firm on new statute
The Hindu, august 12. Describing the new Constitution as a path to peace, she challenged hardline nationalist groups to find 20,000 Sinhala youth willing to go up to the front for battle against the LTTE. ``They should be prepared to accept half their salaries, and stop all development work if they want only a military solution to this issue and not a peaceful political one. Even after achieving a military victory, any Government will have to offer a political solution without which it is definite another Prabhakaran will emerge again.'' More...
Published: Sat Aug 12 16:15:44 EDT 2000
Related News Stories
Chandrika plans to convert Parliament into constituent assembly  - The Hindustan Times
President Chandrika to go ahead with reforms  - The Asian Age
Kumaratunga challenges Sinhala nationalists to resolve war  - HT
Kumaratunga challenges Sinhalese nationalists to resolve Tamil separatist war  - NDTV/MSNBC

Sri Lanka Buddhist monk calls for more opposition
MSNBC, Saturday, 12 August. ''Venerable Rambukwelle Sri Vipassi...urged all groups to forge a united front to prevent any future attempt by the government to re-introduce the most injurious onstitutional reform bill in parliament,'' the independent Island newspaper said. Vipassi is the head of one of Sri Lanka's four principal Buddhist sects whose fierce opposition to the reforms was a key factor in the government's decision to shelve a parliamentary vote on the issue on Tuesday. The proposed new constitution will devolve power to the regions including one administered by minority Tamils to give them a political alternative to the separatist Liberation Tigers of Tamil Ealam (LTTE) rebels. President Chandrika Kumaratunga vowed on Friday to press ahead with the reforms despite the setback in parliament. The constitution aroused the ire of majority Sinhala nationalists including the powerful Buddhist clergy who say it will lead to a division of the country. The LTTE and many Tamil groups rejected the proposals as falling short of their demands. More...
Published: Sat Aug 12 07:08:26 EDT 2000

Kumaratunga vows to go ahead with reforms
Times of India, August 12. Sri Lankan President Chandrika Kumaratunga said she would go ahead with the proposed constitutional reforms despite the failure to obtain a two-third majority to enact the new constitution. The President said she was prepared to enact the new constitution before the dissolution of Parliament on August 24 midnight, if the opposition United National Party agrees to support. Otherwise, she is determined to enact the new constitution after winning the next parliamentery elections. More...
Published: Sat Aug 12 16:30:43 EDT 2000
Related News Stories
Chandrika hopeful of getting reform Bill ratified  - The Hindu NUS
Chandrika vows to enact new constitution  -
S.Lankan President Vows to Push Through New Draft Constitution  - AsiaGateway
Sri Lankan President to go ahead with the proposed constitutional reforms  - NDTV/MSNBC

Lanka panel to review draft statute
Times of India, august 12. Sri Lanka's new prime minister will head a panel to review a draft constitution that was touted as a solution to the Tamil separatist war but failed to win parliamentary support, a newspaper reported on Saturday. Prime Minister Ratnasiri Wickramanayaka will lead the four-member committee, the Daily Mirror reported. The bill could not muster the required two-thirds support, falling short by 12 votes Tuesday. More...
Published: Sat Aug 12 16:19:30 EDT 2000

Mosque massacres revisited
Daily News, august 12. On Friday August 4, 1990 over three hundred Muslims, men and boys, were prostrate in prayer at the Meera Jumma Mosque, fifty yards from the Kandy Batticaloa Road. None of them were armed.A stones throw away from the Meera Jumma is the smaller Hussainya Mosque. There was a smaller gathering of approximately forty people here -- prostrate in prayer too. The power cut had been effected by the large group of LTTE cadres on their murderous mission. More...
Published: Sat Aug 12 16:05:06 EDT 2000

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